The Sweetie Chronicles

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart. ~William Wordsworth

Golden Heart

Every year, the Romance Writers of America give two sets of prestigious awards at the national conference. One is the RITA, which is for published authors and, in that way, somewhat more prestigious and glamorous. The other, is the Golden Heart.

The Golden Heart is an award given to the best manuscripts written by unpublished authors. There are 10 different categories that cover everything from inspirational to historical. I have looked through the RWA website for years wishing I could join, and everytime I was always drawn to reading about the Golden Heart and thinking I would love to enter someday.

Last year, I finally took the leap and joined RWA, and I have been so glad that I did! The network of people in my community and around the US has been valuable beyond belief. Going to the conference this past summer really opened my eyes to a whole new world of romance writing. On one hand, there is so much competition out there and so many truly talented writers still waiting to get published. On the other hand, I'm out there and finally doing something I always wanted to do!

At nationals, the Golden Heart and RITA awards night was one of the biggest evenings. Everyone gets dressed in formal wear and gathers in the biggest room to hear the results. The awards are presented "Academy Award" style with the finalists being announced by a former winner and listed on a large screen. Winning isn't everything, but finaling in the contest is amazing publicity. Editors are aware of who you are. People want to talk to you about your book and your hopes and dreams. You really get the "princess" treatment if you're a Golden Heart Finalist, from what I hear.

Yesterday the 2010 Golden Heart Competition opened for entries. It's $50 to enter and,. of course, you have to have a completed manuscript that fits into the categories. Since I am finished with my manuscript and already starting revisions, I think I'm going to take the plunge and enter this year in the "contemporary series" category. The due date for sending in your manuscript is November 16th, so I have plenty of time to get it in. Hopefully it will lead to good things!!

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Sarra Cannon

Young Adult Indie Author

I always secretly wanted to be a cheerleader. And a witch. Now, I write about both. The first five novels in my Peachville High Demons Young Adult Paranormal series are available now in ebook!

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